Russell Simmons Sues Ex-Wife, Kimora Lee Simmons For Stealing From Him To Raise Bail Money For New Husband, Tim Leissner

A scandal has hit the front door of Kimora Lee Simmons and her current husband, Tim Leissner, as they are both named in a lawsuit by none other than her ex-husband, Russell Simmons.  Although divorced many years ago, Russell and Kimora have been able to amicably co-parent and co-exist.  But the new allegations that Russell has presented against his ex and her husband may forever alter the scope of their friendship and relationship moving forward. 

According to a report from The Blast, the co-founder of Def Jam Recordings has named Kimora Lee Simmons and Leissner in an enormous lawsuit for the alleged funneling and use of shares from their energy drink company, “Celsius”.  Simmons claims that the shares are being allegedly “used as collateral to pay a bond in connection with criminal charges filed against Kimora’s new husband by the feds.” 

Russell and Kimora Lee Simmons at the premiere of RED DRAGON, 9/30/2002, NYC
Editorial credit: Everett Collection /

For years Leissner served as a Goldman Sachs partner in Asia.  Leissner and Kimora were confirmed to be married in February of 2014 and the next year Simmons gave birth to their son, Wolfe. Trouble would soon come around as he pleads guilty to stealing billions of dollars from the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund, 1MDB. 

Leissner, along with two other accomplices, were involved in “mismanaging around $4.5 billion between 2009-2014″, according to the Department of Justice as per a report by Forbes.  Out of the funds, it is alleged that $200 million went to Leissner. He took the funds to “live a lavish rap lifestyle.” 

Money laundering charges were brought up against Leissner in 2017 as they were also discovered to have laundered the money was being transferred through U.S. banks.  Forbes also reported that six other countries were investigating the crimes.   

Kimora Lee had to come forward to defend herself after speculations arose that part of those funds was used to launch her businesses.  “I’ve been around for quite some time. I’m an old lady so I’ve always been self-sustaining, self-funded,” she said to WWD. “I’ve had Baby Phat and at one point Phat Farm, too. I’ve had Couture by Kimora, Fabulosity, KLS so this is not my first ride at the rodeo. I’ve had six or seven successful fragrances.” 

She added, “I fund my own business.…I’ve been in the fashion industry since [age] 12, modeling and all that. So all my money, not that I want to say it that way, this is my third marriage that I’m on so, no, my husband has nothing to do with my professional life.” 

As it stands, both Kimora and her husband are not in good standing with Russell.  Court documents obtained by The Blast, both of them are being accused of “conspiring with each other, aided and abetted each other and together engaged in fraud by causing an unlawful conversion and fraudulent transfer” of the shares.  All without the consent of Simmons, or his knowledge.   

Once his accountants discovered a “substantial unexplained change” and alerted Russell, which would lead him and his lawyers to discover the alleged transferal of funds to themselves.   

Russell claims that the two were in a crunch and would need approximately $44 million in order to stay out of jail. Knowing their history, Russell is reported to have written a letter to Kimora on May 5th in order “to get the important family matter of the Celsius shares to a close so that we can put it behind us and carry on as the loving united front we have always been.” 

He added in the letter, “I am shocked and saddened to see how your side has behaved in response to my repeated attempts to get an agreement from you to rightfully and legally reaffirm my 50% of the Celsius shares..which have been locked up with the government after being used for your husband’s bail money.” 

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